Wednesday, June 08, 2011

re-post wednesday

recently it seems like my words do not fall together in the rhythm they once knew. not only in my like of writing but even in my speech. it might be all in my head, but it's the truth. the desire to write is there, the words just seem to be falling flat.

june 2010 was an interesting month for me, and now being a year away from it, i love it very dearly. i love what God did in me. i love the challenges i faced, as bizarre and unexpected as they were. i love all that has happened between then and now. i love that water under the bridge and time under a band-aid heals wounds. it's a marvelous thing to be able to look back; especially when your vision has been sharpened, your heart has been massaged into something softer and your perspective has gained some altitude.

today has been that kind of a day. a looking back day. the last 6 months. the last 8 months and the last year and a half. perhaps it's because i have a unique ability to remember things in extreme detail and remember dates with an uncanny quickness or perhaps it's because because the summer of 2010 will not quickly be forgotten. whatever it is, i decided to venture into the blog roll from last summer to see what i saw then and how i see it now.

the following post made me cry. it made my heart skip a beat. it made a funny "i remember that" smile cross my face. and then there was a sigh. a deep, long sigh... as if to say "thank you Lord that you never leave us where we are when we say Yes to you, but instead you pull us forward."



un-worthy. truly thankful.

this last week has been interesting. i have been overwhelmed by one thought:

i am not worthy to receive this grace or love, yet i can't go on without it.

through a series of rather unexpected events and crazy conversations i have had an intense week. the deepest part of my soul gave way and i feel my depth of understanding has deepened.

have you ever com face to face with the ugly truth that you are not perfect? as much as i know this fact and have known this fundamental truth that no one is so, i sometimes get caught in the comparison game. i think that because i have not done "this" or "that" i have earned the right to stand taller.

i sin.

it's the plain truth.

we all sin.

however after years in the church and years of knowing my salvation i had somewhere along the way lost sight of the fact that i am (always) in desperate need of grace and forgiveness. i don't know if repentance became routine or if my sin somehow seemed smaller, but somewhere along the way i lost the depth of the cross.

it seems impossible. it's the cross. it's the foundation of my salvation. it's the emblem of my faith. how could i have lost that? as crazy as it sounds the depth of the meaning of the cross got lost somewhere in my pursuit of the One who hung on it.

this week something happened inside me. it felt like an odd combination of a swift kick in the rear and heart surgery.

i have work to do! i have a calling and a purpose that is greater than i know or could imagine! i have work to do! what makes me worthy of the anointing i desire? what makes me able to GO and DO what God asks me to do?

as much as i can't earn anointing or favor by doing good things or praying over X amount of students, i can control the contents of my character. the content of my character must be able to hold the weight of an anointing and the power of Christ in me.

a while back i wrote a this post about grace. the grace of God has been something that i have been searching out, reading about, listening to messages about and talking about in a pretty huge way for about nine months. this week i experienced that grace in a way i can't remember experiencing any other time up until now.

the grace of God is meant to compel us to righteous living not give us a reason to continue in sin. (Romans 6)

that is something i have "known" in my head for a long time. i do my best to pursue righteous living. i strive to seek first the kingdom of God. i also try not to be a repeater of sin. i said it yesterday like this;

sin is a swamp. icky. stinky. gross. at any point i can be in that swamp by the choices i make. at the edge of that swamp is a meadow or righteous life. it's beautiful green grass blowing in the warm summer breeze. it smells like something sweet is about to happen there. if i am in the swamp the grace of God does not come from the meadow, stand at the edge of the swamp and shout at me to come get it. it does not come into the swamp for a moment so that i can taste it and then run back to the meadow as if it was teasing me. it does not stay in the meadow and ignore the swamp. the grace of God comes into the swamp and envelopes me right where i am at. and it stays with me. it does not like the swamp. it does not justify being in the swamp. it does not encourage me to come back to the swamp for a visit in the future. it compels me towards a righteous life. it compels me to come back to the meadow with it, not looking back at the swamp. grace, it encourages me to strain my neck and look at the golden sun setting in the far off horizon of the green meadow.

this picture has been so vivid in my mind this week. i can't pin-point the moment it became as clear as it is now, but what i do know is at the recognition of this picture came a flood of tears. because in that swamp i can do nothing. in that swamp i cannot be good enough for grace to get me. i smell as bad as what i am sitting in and the sweet smelling grace of God comes to me. i can do nothing but welcome and receive it with open arms. the worst i could do is to stay in the swamp and invite grace to join me. the worst i can do is to justify how i got there and why i choose to stay. the worst i can do is deny the compelling life grace has to offer me away from the swamp.

of this i am un-worthy. of this i am truly thankful.

without the cross there is no real grace. without real grace there is no real life.

i have work to do! i have an anointing and calling! i have the power of the Holy Spirit living inside of me ready to use me to change my generation! i cannot do these things and live the life i dream of sitting in a swamp. my character will be strengthened in the walk from the swamp to righteousness. my character will grow through the difficult situations i face. the content of my character will grow when i can stand in humility and say "i was in the swamp, but NOW i choose righteousness."

my prayer is that i will never take for granted the work of the cross. my prayer is that i can walk in the anointing. i can embrace the calling. i can operate in the power. my prayer is that through grace righteousness would compel me again and again away from the swamp.

Saturday, May 14, 2011

it's a new word.

closer-ish. (noun) a describing word. closer in proximity. closer in countries. closer in time zones. the new distance that two people are physically from each other.
Cassie is so happy that her sister is now closer-ish.

This word and definition actually apply to both my sisters in this picture...

...however today i am especially thankful that my sister
(the one to the right of me) is closer-ish.
She just arrived home from Argentina; it's been entirely too long since i have seen her!
(the one in the pink) is currently in Denver CO with YWAM...
which also makes her closer-ish to my current location.


Yup, i'm still here.
Sometimes silent in the blogging world, but alive and well; shivering my way through the
Minnesota Spring and praying Summer comes soon.

Monday, March 07, 2011

minnesota when.

i've been writing this post in my head for 2 months now, it's time to get it out there.

you know you live in minnesota when...

- you become an "old lady" within the first week of living here because you use a heating blanket and humidifier every night.

- you go for a drive with your fiance and see 10,000 (literally) people standing on a frozen lake in a competition ice fishing tournament.

- it's -36* on the said day of the ice fishing tournament.

- across the highway from the said ice fishing tournament there is another frozen lake... with rows and rows of parked CARS/TRUCKS/BUSES & SUVS from the said 10,000 people who are fishing on the other lake.

- one day it is 31* and while out for a drive you say to your fiance "it makes me so happy that it has warmed up enough for the kids to play in the snow."

- you get to work and can't find a parking spot close to the door because there are 100 snow mobiles in the parking lot. the drivers/riders are all inside having dinner.

- snow mobile-ing is not just for sport in minnesota, it's also a means of "normal" transportation and NOT uncommon to see them at the grocery store, the tanning salon, Wal- Mart, Dairy Queen and parked along the street in front of people's houses.

- by some miracle of Jesus the second week in February the weather warms up to 45*, this for "normal" minnesotians is the que for SHORTS, FLIP-FLOPS, T-SHIRTS and leaving the house without a fuzzy hat & scarf.

- a week after the 45* weather it's a blizzard outside and you insist to your fiance that it's not that bad and you can make it the 18 mile drive home just fine. you promise to go slow and proceed to take off into the pitch black and snowinglikecrazy night. 48 minutes later you make it home. On the way you realize your fiance man was right and it was CRAZY to try and drive in weather like this! here's why;
A. the wind was whipping so hard you were certain you were going to take flight.
B. the snow was blowing in EVERY direction (Up, Down, Sideways to the Left and Right) making it nearly impossible to see more than 10 feet ahead of the car.
C. on the 9 miles of county highway between "town" and your road you see exactly 1 other car, no snow-plows, no snow-mobiles, no big trucks, nothing. (this is VERY rare for this hwy).
D. you realize multiple times that you can't tell where the side of the road is... on either side, and due to the fact that traffic is non existent you decided that driving down the middle of the road (or what you hope is the middle) is the safest bet.
E. Once you turn onto your road you realize NO ONE has driven on this road since the blizzard started 5 hours ago. Once again you decide the "middle" is your best bet.
F. the normal 2 minutes it takes to get from the hwy to your drive way takes nearly 15 minutes.

- the ground under the hwy freezes to deep/hard/insanely that the road actually "buckles" causing a "speed bump" effect for 3 miles.

- it's your dad's birthday (March 6th) and you realize you have never seen so much snow on the ground on this day in your life, and just when you think "that's insane!" it starts snowing. and doesn't stop for 12 hours.

- contrary to popular belief Hockey is actually a sport and people play it, follow it, drive hours to see it and keep track of what teams are doing well. weird, i know.

- also contrary to popular belief Hockey is something people start playing when they are 5-6years old, kind of like t-ball where i come from. They play the regular season, get on select teams, travel all over to play it and spend way too much money 0n gear.

- tanning is a hobby. it's something to do when there is nothing else you want to leave your house to do. everyone tans. grandma's, grandpa's, chef's at high end restaurants, the verizon guy, the starbucks manager, the bass player in the band and the 13 year old girl (with her mom's consent of course). everyone is tan. always.

other random facts about living in minnesota,
- it hasn't rained once in 3 months since i moved here.
- i NEVER leave the house without a coat, gloves, a scarf and sometimes a hat.
- i also never leave the house without starting my car at least 15 minutes before i have to leave.
- i sat in an indoor/outdoor hot-tub one night. My hair froze. i didn't even stick my head in the water and my hair froze.

that's all for now, but i'm sure there are more. i'll write the Summer edition once i've lived past this LONG, LONG winter!

Thursday, March 03, 2011

love. life.

so this is love? i'm so blessed.

it's been awhile since posting about my fantastic engagement.
life has had it's ups and also some downs.
i find it hard to write when i don't know how to feel.
not having consistent internet did not help either.
so here i am at 1:52am on a thursday night,
dusting off the blog and being determined to tell you all about the exciting life i live,
and the glorious things God is doing!